Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, recovering from a serious eye injury and preparing for surgery, insisted Thursday that he will run for reelection in 2016.
“I plan to run,” he said during his first press conference since his workout accident. “My staff has continued to review my new campaign. We have quite an operation.”
Reid appeared in a tiny room inside the Capitol packed with reporters and photographers. He could barely be heard over the rain of shutter clicks as he pointed to his right eye and described his injury. His eye is still bandaged from the accident, in which he banged against a file cabinet when his exercise band snapped. He also has a bruise on his lower left cheek, but he otherwise appeared normal.
Reid will undergo surgery on his eye Monday, which will require him to work from home the rest of the week.
“There is no reason I can’t come back a week from Monday,” he said.
Reid said he is limiting his time reading so as not to strain his left eye. An avid reader, he has turned to audio books. “I quite enjoyed it, to be honest. I never thought I would,” he said. Reid said he is also in constant contact with his staff about the floor activities now being run by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
Asked how he thinks McConnell is doing, he said, “I’m not going to give him a grade. He’s doing fine.”
Reid also indicated that the upcoming Senate consideration of Iran sanctions could pose some questions for Democrats. “Iran sanctions right now are a moving target,” he said. Lawmakers need to understand where the talks are going and what will emerge from the Senate committees on the issue before he can take a stand, Reid said.
“I’m not going to speculate on what I’m going to do,” he said.